Thursday, August 11, 2011

A Line of Belief in the Sand

So much on the mind, but so little time to blog.  Here's a short one.

It's amazing, amusing, and sad to me to see what the mention of faith, or lack thereof, can do.  You can be having a perfectly good conversation with someone come to an abrupt end just by admitting you do not believe in God.  For others, it's just the opposite.  Mention you are a Christian in certain crowds and you get shut out.

A commenter by the name of Ollie Wallflower left this little nugget on my other blog on a post related to Jesus' controversial command to "hate" your family:
"Just a few months ago my friend's mother sent back the Mother's Day card he sent her because he had become a Christian and she has apparently disowned him because of it. It's a sad reality."
Based on my limited experience, here's a list of why some proclaimed atheists may appear to be that rude:
  • Arrogance: believing that someone of faith is silly, willfully ignorant, or just slow.
  • Insecurity: not having a foundational defense for why you don't believe despite the majority around you believing, you just avoid getting into the conversation
  • Anger(1): not really an atheist, but is rather angry with God for some personal tragedy.
  • Anger(2): in a stage of recovery due to the recent loss of faith.
  • Guilt: knowing that you have made some serious mistakes, you don't need anyone to remind you.  (May or may not be a true atheist)
  • Rebellion: you don't need anyone telling you what is right or wrong.  (May or may not be a true atheist)
  • Bored: heard all of the Christian talk before, is still not impressed, and does not want to listen to it again.
  • Offended: when you get told you are going to Hell just for not believing, you tend not to want to be friends with people who hold those kinds of beliefs.
  • Fear: you do not understand it so you try to avoid it for your own protection.
  • Turned Off(1): may have nothing or little to do with the other person's Christianity, but the sum of the conversation thus far has made you decide the other person is not worth talking to, and you are just not a fan of perpetuating social graces.
  • Turned Off(2):the believer has found a way to weave God and/or Jesus ten times into his or her last five sentences, and so seems a bit overzealous.
I'm sure I left some off, so I may append to this later.

I'll start the Christian side on the next post.


  1. This could be for the Atheist or Christian side of things:

    Fear: People are afraid of things they don't understand.

  2. That's good one, D'Ma. I'll add it to the list. :-)

  3. You're *so* right about this, on both counts (atheists toward Christians and vice versa). That's so upsetting to me, because if anything, Christians and atheists should SEEK OUT those who believe differently than they do to educate themselves and others about where their differences and similarities lie. Aside from our beliefs about God, you and I, Fool, have so much in common and get along so well. How unfortunate it would be if we were to avoid each other out of (as D'Ma wisely pointed out) fear. I'm honored to call you a friend. And I'm thankful that you haven't let any of the reasons you've listed above deter you from engaging in heartfelt--and often heated!--debate with those, like me, who have an entirely different worldview.

  4. Many thanks for your kind words, Ollie Wallflower. I, too, consider it an honor to call you a friend, and a very worthy sparring partner. ;-)